OUT & ABOUT: Launching into fall with apple cannons at Lyman Orchards

MIDDLEFIELD — Lyman Orchards has added apple cannons to its agricultural attractions. 

The cannons were installed in the sunflower maze parking lot last weekend.

“We thought it was another new activity — to come out to the farm and shoot apples at targets,” said John Lyman III, executive vice president. 

Here are three things to know before you go. 

1.Where and when 

The cannons are in the sunflower maze parking lot on State Street, directly across the street from pick-your-own pumpkins. It’s $5 for a bucket of eight apples.

The cannons are open weekends and Monday holidays. Lyman said they are considering opening the attraction on Friday afternoons as well.

2. The experience

As the cannon operators will warn you, once you get started, you’ll probably want to keep shooting apples all day.

You first enter a fenced-in area, where an employee shows you how to load the apple. You then aim with the help of a scope and try to hold the cannon still as the apple is fired into the field with a loud pop. 

“It’s quite satisfying,” Lyman said. 

For 10-year-old Darien resident Declan Keating, the cannons were a blast. 

“I thought it was loud…and it was really fun because when you were aiming...you had to get the scope lined up with the target,” he said.

Keating visited the orchards with his family, who all took turns trying the cannons and cheering each other on. He shot the final apple, successfully hitting the 150-foot target sign to a round of applause.

3.Making it a fall weekend

The apple cannons are just one more thing you can do at Lyman Orchards this fall. Other activities include pick-your-own apples and pumpkins, exploring the market and getting some produce or baked goods, golfing and getting lost in the corn maze. 

“There’s plenty for the whole family to do,” Lyman said. 

The corn maze’s theme is NASCAR this year, celebrating a Middletown native and NASCAR champion, Joey Logano. The maze is open through Nov. 3. from 3 to 6 p.m. on weekdays and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for ages 4 through 12. 

The orchards also often offer pony rides and horse-drawn wagon rides on weekends and holidays. 

Twitter: @baileyfaywright


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